10 Jun 2013

Sorcery holding back development in Solomon Islands: Academic

1:49 pm on 10 June 2013

A Honiara-based academic says sorcery beliefs may be holding back social and economic development in Solomon Islands.

Lawrence Foanaota, who is a researcher for James Cook University, says some communities are afraid, concerned and also angry about the effect sorcery is having on their lives, families and businesses.

He says infrastructure developments have been held back because of sorcery accusations.

"Some major development projects have been proposed. They have already had the ground breaking, up until now there has been nothing happening and there are a number of other examples. So, people believe that they might be related to fear of sorcery from the other opposing tribe using it."

Lawrence Foanaota says while the incidents of sorcery are not as violent or pervasive as in neighbouring Papua New Guinea, the number of people starting to believe in black magic is increasing.